Mascot Label Group once again building on the amazing year of 2016. Throughout 2017 from January to December the label keeps delivering albums from Artists & Bands Rocking the blues and more they excite the listening ear.
Beth Hart’s music stripped back, with the lyrics laid bare was an emotional journey for everyone tears were shed on stage and in the auditorium tonight. This is music that connects a great performer with the audience.
“The album, where nothing is overdone, acoustic authenticity maintained, Joe’s vocals the best I have heard. No theatrics, music and the power of lyrics telling the story in perfect harmony”. Full Bluesdoodles Review of the Album Live At Carnegie Hall HERE
Live Music Came Outta The Swamp to Play The Louisiana
Live Music Came Outta The Swamp to Play The Louisiana. Who came outta the swamp? It had to be Big Boy Bloater and the Limits bringing Luxury Hobo to Bristol tonight. Opening the Friday live music delight was Ruzz Evans, flying solo tonight. His rockabilly guitar-fueled the energy. Creating that end of the week vibe. As he showcased numbers form his two albums with some spicy instrumentals. Ruzz set the scene for Big Boy Bloater with his energetic mix of Rock n’ Roll, Bo Diddley and a twist of Country.
The room was full with a dark and atmospheric upstairs at The Louisiana, Bristol. Nothing subtle about these hard-edges hard-hitting blues. Bog Boy really got the crowd going with his unique interaction with the audience full of smiles, stories and the raising of his can with a hearty cheer. A real gruff voice with lyrics that were as clear as a bell booming out. The Limits supporting provided a rhythmic base for the melodies of his guitar to fly. Creating a harmonious and heady mix of British R & B.
The drumming was superb from Matt Cowley, with a different drum set creating a distinctive and contemporary sound even with judicious use of a cowbell on the nearest thing to a title track of the current album Luxury Hobo Blues. The bassist Steve Oates add a throaty growl and rhythms that shaped the sound that was being created building the tension. Every note curling around the guitar of Big Boy Bloater.
Big Boy Bloater has a distinctive style. He exudes confidence as he explores the darker side of thinking. Never dampening the mood whether singing about murder or neurosis. This is due in no small part to his easy conversation with the audience sharing insights behind the numbers. With another song from Luxury Hobo. I Got The Feeling Someone’s Watching Me. He instills the gothic horror movie, with tension and the feeling that something is just about to happen. Great song, fantastic vibe live music that excites, intrigues and energises.
Now he may have a new album out early this year but the heart of the set was five new numbers. Forewarning his fans that another album is around the corner that is if these songs are representative going to be exciting with more Big Boy Bloater stories to be told.
A true story kicked this part of the set-off. Love and betrayal explored on She Didn’t Even Buy a Ticket. The drugs that keep us going are explored on Pills and on Unnaturally Charming a deep and heavy number with the slide that adds to the mood as we look into a murder’s mind. Then a highlight of the evening a wonderful shuffle with The Saturday Night Desperation Shuffle.
Time we were now deep in the clutches of the music. With Rocket Surgery a perfect way of addressing some technology gremlins we moved on to Robot Girlfriend.
Yes, Friday night we were Insanely Happy listening to the music that made you want to dance and smile. Far too soon it was the last song. Few minutes silence and then the encore It Came Outta The Swamp. What a highlight to leave us with. What a night of music to kick-start the weekend.
Now, this is live music and sometimes the band brings gremlins into the venue. Tonight BBB was beset with technology gremlins including his vintage amp deciding it needed a rest. The consummate professional, keeping the vibe going with quips and working through the issues. This did not dim the enthusiasm of the audience. This is live music we like the unexpected. Tonight, everybody went home happy having heard some brilliant contemporary blues-tinged R n’ B.
Big Boy Bloater On Tour Arrives at The Louisiana Bristol
Some say he came out of the swamp. The truth is; the number is It Came Outta The Swamp. Check out this clever video below. It Came Outta The Swamp is just one of the superb tracks on Big Boy Bloater & The Limits album Luxury Hobo.Bluesdoodles has listened and agrees this is a soundscape of what many of us feel but do not have the talent to encapsulate in a 4-minute display of blues that may not be pure but is definitely mean dirty and very good. Read more to find out why the album was a perfect TEN – HERE
Now you have read the review of the album, watched the video. Next move os to go and hear Big Boy Bloater and The Limits LIVE! The Band is out around the country September & October.
BD: Thanks, Big Boy Bloater for taking the time to chat with Bluesdoodles today. I was amazed that nearly a year has gone by since I reviewed your excellent album Luxury Hobo. Before we talk about the tour let’s start with the album. Review can be found HERE
BD: You have been quite open that the inspiration behind Luxury Hobo was your personal journey with depression
BBB: Think I had come through all the bad places and was in a good place when I was writing for the album, I had been down at the bottom but now in a good place looking back that is the inspiration for many of the lyrics and melody.
Sitting down, a good song may be grungy but not so grungy that it is hard to pick out the melody. It is the melody that attracts and makes people go back to a song and listen again.
BD: The title is intriguing title life of a Hobo is not normally associated with luxury!
BBB: It is a comment on the current way many of us live. Constantly on the move but wanting luxury. We definitely move around more from place to place; yes we travel but we want to surround ourselves with comfort, glitz and definitely luxury. Deep down we can’t have both.
BD: The video for It Came Out Of The Swamp was definitely attention grabbing how did you come up with the idea of using Lego building blocks?
BBB: Part of coming out of the Breakdown was stock animation as a hobby to keep my mind busy. I would grab a bag of Lego out of the loft and build, photograph and animate. Around this time Lego brought out the ‘swamp monster’ set so it was the perfect combination Lego and myself were in harmony and the video was born. Yes, it has had and continues to attract positive attention.
BD: Do you have a favourite/ special track on the album? And why?
Truly, I love all the tracks but it is the title track Luxury Hobo Blues that is most personal. It is semi-autobiographical I have traveled a lot with my music. It is about keep taking the tablets and moving on. Playing music has taken me all over the world it has been fantastic. The experiences have been good and bad. From travelling first class to being in the back of a transit.
BD: What were your first musical influences growing up
Mostly from my Dad’s records of from the 1950’s/60’s lots of rock n’ roll started me down the road of exploring the blues. At the end of the 70’s/ beginning of the 80’s lot s of the old bluesmen were travelling around Slim Gaillard and others. I love the way that the blues does not have to be played perfectly, not in tune these are the bits that give the blues character and flavour. John Lee Hooker listen to him, they are great songs, analyse the music and they are not that good but the feel and emotion makes his blues special.
BD: 2017 starts with you touring including a festival. Do you enjoy playing your music live.
BBD: I love playing my music live, and tracks from Luxury Hobo work so well live. Looking forward to getting on stage meeting people early 2017 and the April HRH Blues Festival in Sheffield. Not played there since the first one in Wales so looking forward to it. I do have some new music as it has been an eventful year and may even sneak a couple in at the live shows. There is definitely lots of life left in the album and I am chomping at the bit to get out there and deliver the songs live on stage. I know that people love to see something a bit different when a tune is performed live. It is always a highlight for them if they notice the band are giving each other that look when the music has taken them to a different place and we have to pull something special out of the bag to get back on track. It is good that little bit of living and playing dangerously. I remember once at The 100 club, I broke a string, something that rarely happens to me. I had no spare guitar so had to replace the string on stage whilst continuing to sing. That is live music as it happens you just have to be there to experience those moments.
BD: What other plans do you have for 2017?
BBD: Following on from the early run of dates will be doing festivals through the summer and a more extensive autumn tour is being organised in the UK and Europe so keep checking out the website. I am writing new music and hope to get back in the studio for the next Big Boy Bloater album.
BD: If you were putting together the perfect band with members from across the years (dead or alive) who would you have playing
Drums: Earl Palmer
Bass: Willie Dixon
Guitar: Myself (it will be such fun to play with these guys)
Keys: Ike Turner
Vocals: Howlin’ Wolf
This is a super group it will be so much fun to play with these guys. How long it will last before a fight not so sure. Be great music but probably a short-lived group!
28th January – The Anvil, Basingstoke: BBB’s Lonely Blues Show 23rd February – Fat Lil’s, Oxford 17th March – The Railway, Winchester w/ Jack J Hutchinson 18th March – The Freebird, Newcastle-Under-Lyme 19th March – THE 100 CLUB, LONDON w/Jack J Hutchinson & DJ Jim Jones 16th April – HRH Blues Fest, O2 Academy Sheffield 28th April – VHRA Vintage Nationals, Santa Pod Raceway, Northamptonshire
What a line-up this not just promises to be exciting it will be with scintillating guitars, powerful voices as blues is twisted, turned creating a rainbow faceted jewel of every shade of blue. will be rocked, amazed and excited by the music from the first to the last note.
HRH Blues are proud to fly in yet another incredible talent for its 3rd round of Blues rock infused fun in Sheffield.
The Billy Walton Band compliment an already stellar Blues Rock line up and with under 90 tickets remaining, it looks like it will sell out even earlier than last year.
Ten Years After and Bernie Marsden performing at last year’s HRH Blues 2
Ten Years After
HRH CEO Jonni Davis praised the band by saying “ Walton’s talents are no secret among everyone in the Jersey shore music scene and with the founding of the Billy Walton Band, there’s little doubt his reputation will grow far beyond the Garden State. The Billy Walton Band’s sound is a combination of hard blues reminiscent of Hendrix, Clapton and Vaughn mixed with a healthy dose of Warren Hayes and Derrick Trucks.
“Live, Walton has always been an explosive performer with Jaw dropping talent but with the addition of bassist William Paris, Richie Taz on sax and drummer Johnny D’Angelo the Billy Walton band churns out a singular brand of funky blues that has deep roots in both the jam band musical tradition as well as the Jersey shore Walton has cut his teeth on. We can’t wait to see him perform next year in Sheffield.”
HRH Blues 3 takes place on 15th & 16th April 2017 @ the 02 Academy , Sheffield and the last few tickets can be booked online HEREor by ringing Lisa on 0207 097 1521
We loved the album, Luxury Hobo – read what we saidHERE and why Bluesdoodles thought There are no limits to Big Boy Bloater’s blues on Luxury Hobo … Confirming there are NO! LiMiTS with Big Boy Bloater’s Life of Luxury.
Bluesdoodles gives this CD TEN doodle paws out of TEN ….
Check out the incredible stop motion LEGO SWAMP MONSTER video for
It Came Outta The Swamp here
Big Boy Bloater & The LiMiTs announce ‘Luxury Hobo’ May Tour
The band will then be hitting the road for the Luxury Hobo tour from Sunday 8th May including a show at the iconic 100 Club in London.
Luxury Hobo UK Tour
SUNDAY 8TH MAY – THE GLEE CLUB, BIRMINGHAM – Tickets £12 Adv
THURSDAY MAY 12TH – SOUTHEND CLIFFS PAVILION – Tickets £14 Adv
FRIDAY MAY 13TH – THE HUNTER CLUB, BURY ST EDMUNDS – Tickets £12 Adv
SATURDAY MAY 14TH – THE FORUM, TUNBRIDGE – Tickets £10 Adv
SUNDAY MAY 15TH – 100 CLUB, LONDON – Tickets £15 Adv
FRIDAY MAY 20TH – THE OLD FIRE STATION, OXFORD – Tickets £12 Adv
SATURDAY MAY 21ST – THE RAILWAY, WINCHESTER – Tickets £12 Adv
THURSDAY MAY 26TH – THE MUSICIAN, LEICESTER – Tickets £12 Adv
SATURDAY MAY 28TH – MR KYPS, POOLE – Tickets £10 Adv
Big Boy Bloater says “Writing this album is a bit of a change from the last one, I wanted to write these biting songs, but didn’t want to be too negative either, so I added a little twist to the end to say I didn’t really mean it or something more positive” he adds. Having always self-produced all his own records, this time he enlisted the ear of Adam Whalley to help bring out what they produce live and it brings the production quality to the next level.”
Luxury Hobo is out via the Mascot Label Group (Joe Bonamassa, Black Stone Cherry, Walter Trout, Monster Truck, The Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band) on 11th March 2016.
Big Boy Bloater and The LiMiTs are:
Big Boy Bloater – Vocals/Guitar
Matt Cowley – Drums
Dan Edwards – Keyboards
Steven Oats – Bass
There are no limits to Big Boy Bloater’s blues on Luxury Hobo as his voice and guitar playing explores narratives and stretches his interpretation of the blues. Big Boy Bloater & The LiMiTS are in the zone that delivers music that inspires and ignites a fire that gets your feet tapping and ears engaged from the first to the last note. Confirming there are NO! LiMiTS with Big Boy Bloater’s Life of Luxury.
Rejuvenated and empowered to produce music that counts reflecting experiences of a bout of depression, has resulted in darker music with personal inputs to the lyrics throughout Luxury Hobo. The album around the breakdown, how we all have good things in our lives and yet still dissatisfied so the outcome medication is to feel normal. This is not an internalized, pain laden album it is full of up tempo beats, guitar, keys and vocals that you want to listen to. The lyrics have a lick of wit and with twists and the whiff of dark humour.
What a high-octane start with Devils Not Angels, you know this is not about saccharin sweet blues but blues with a gritty reality. Dark blues not baby blue music. This is about reality of first observations that can be very deceptive. Then as if to prove a point the mood changes the licks are swampy and the textures grind on mercilessly as It Came Out Of The Swamp. Pumping swamp blues you feel the monster behind you as you listen the music and lyrics create the feeling of being scared and how we often react inappropriately. How easy it is to be misunderstood captured as he sings “it was cold and hungry, it just wanted to eat, but all the people, chased it up the street”, towns people reacted by attacking with a dystopian outcome because – they just didn’t understand!
Textures change, Hill Country music is explored on The Devils Tail and getting his attention is about You Tube Generation. Or in fact anyone fame-hungry and will do anything to be noticed even stamping on the Devils Tail. The following track half way through I Got the Feeling Someone’s Watching Me, picks up modern phenomena we hardly notice CCTV. With its change of tempo. With hand claps and Latin feel this is flamenco blues with Parisian style thanks to accordion licks. This has the most Tom Waits feel as BBB vocals growls through the lyrics with a menace that is barely hidden this is track that captures the album in a luxurious nutshell.
The title track is modern British blues twisting blues and Rock n Roll to tell the tale and captivate with an infectious beat. As the album reaches the close the penultimate track shows a different side slower full of soulfulness a moment of calm. Closing with Not Cool Man – that may be the song but not the reality of the album.
Big Boy Bloater says “The basic idea of the title is we are all luxury hobo’s these days … I think the whole album is about modern day life and society”. Bluesdoodles has listened and agrees this is a soundscape of what many of us feel but do not have the talent to encapsulate in a 4 minute display of blues that may not be pure but is definitely mean dirty and very good.
Bluesdoodles gives this CD TEN doodle paws out of TEN ….
Opening the proceedings to an excited and enthusiastic audience was Big Boy Bloater; this he partly did with an energetic set of self-penned numbers, he did engage with the audience but what he failed to do was crank up the energy. I also felt that Big Boy Bloater missed a self-marketing opportunity to build a new fan base from the audience waiting to hear George Thorogood & The Destroyers. On the plus side he does have a big personality and this came to the fore when introducing some of the songs that he felt passionate about like ‘Insanely Happy’ where the true depth of skills in the band were showcased.
Then after a short break the packed auditorium was electric with anticipation and excitement and then the show began with a dramatic entrance and it didn’t take long for the crowd to be bopping along to some great lead breaks and licks, this was musicianship of the highest order. George is a real showman with a great mix of self-penned and cleverly re-arranged blues classics with some heavy dollops of pure class Rock ‘n’ Roll! The lighting effects were very dramatic with the video images of fire, flames matching the beat and heat of the music it was going to be a hot and steamy event at St David’s Hall tonight. The unique take of some ‘Chess Records‘ classics was impressive; this is how these numbers should be covered bringing dynamic live experience to well-known blues numbers. This is blues that is not staid and stuck in a rut but free-flowing rhythm that makes you want to get up and dance!
The use of the backdrop videos were skilful and relevant at times you could have been at an avant-garde film festival! But this was a show with blues and George Thorogood taking centre stage nothing was going to silence him tonight..wow! George introduced the band with a video backdrop of each member of The Destroyers of course, this collective wealth of talent are: Jeff Simon (Drums) aka The Timekeeper; Billy Blough (Bass) aka Dr Martini; Jim Suhler (Guitar) aka Tex and Buddy Leach (Sax) aka Cincinnati Kid. Lonesome George delivered a stellar performance of his acclaimed number ‘I Drink Alone‘, also in the set list was John Lee Hooker’s, ‘House Rent Blues‘ a delicious version with George on his own on the stage, what set the number alive: firstly it was not a dull recital of the lines secondly, by dynamic interactive playtime with enthusiastic audience participation, making you want to head straight to the bar. The band rejoined the party with the clever chorus video back drop in perfect timing between the music and video as the words ‘one bourbon (some interesting bourbon brands on display), one scotch and one beer; and finally the caption Keep Calm & Drink Beer all this excitement made the audience whoop and yell with pure delight. George Thorogood’s selection of songs gave a variance in tempo and mood as he slid through the widest of blues genre including some Johnny Cash with ‘Early One Morning‘. As with many guitarists there was the change of guitars, tonight this worked so well as each had a different sound enabling George to play slide and in his words bring some sophistication to the proceedings with is stunning white Gibson guitar as he delivered his biggest hit ‘Bad to the Bone’. George the powerhouse and the centre, right and left of the stage, left the stage giving Jim Suhler, a superb guitarist in his own right, the opportunity to come forward and play a quite magnificent solo, reminding me of what an act he had been at Carlisle Blues Festival 2012 with his own band ‘the Monkey Beats’; then with a cheer George was back on stage sans guitar and delivered a great version of Howlin’ Wolf’s, ‘Tail Dragger ‘with a heavy bass/rhythm line bringing a little funk into the proceedings.
This was a truly fun evening, great atmosphere, great live blues music that was centre stage of the visual and audio show at all times proving that the blues is fun and shouldn’t ever be stagnant regurgitation of the same old product. St David’s Hall was the ideal setting for George’s first visit to Wales and we are all hoping he will come back very soon.
LizAiken Photography has more photographs click here